Memories Matter Camp

Memories Matter Bereavement Camp is a one-day camp experience for kids ages 5-12 who have experienced the death of a parent, grandparent, sibling, friend or other loved one.

Children are often the forgotten mourners. The death of a loved one brings the need to deal with emotions and lifestyle adjustments. It is a very heavy burden.

Created and directed by Golden Belt Home Health & Hospice grief counselor, the camp is free of charge and underwritten by St. Rose Health Center. If interested in the camp contact staff at 620-792-8171 to find out further information for date and to reserve your spot. Space is limited.

Download and fill out an application for the Memories Matter Camp.

You can:

  • Email completed applications to Cathy Soeken at catherine.soeken@haysmed.com
  • Fax completed applications to 620-792-3825 Attn: Cathy Soeken
  • Mail completed applications to :
    • Cathy Soeken
      3520 Lakin #102
      Great Bend, KS 67530

Memories Matter Camp believes:

  • Grief and mourning are a natural reaction to the death of a loved one.
  • Grief and mourning are processes; not one-time events.
  • Children grieve differently than adults.
  • All feelings are okay.
  • Children learn through play.

A day of healing

Trained counselors will guide campers through a variety of activities designed to provide healing for body, mind and spirit.

Activities include:

  • Music
  • Art projects
  • Games
  • Puppet show

Sharing feelings and working on projects with other children who have experienced a similar loss is an invaluable experience.

If you know a child who has experienced the loss of a loved one, now you have a way to help. Call Golden Belt Home Health & Hospice for more information at 620-792-8171. Space is limited.

“The child  may be a little apprehensive at first, but talking with counselors and other youngsters encourages them to talk more freely about their feelings throughout the day. Parents are welcome to stay all day or leave their children at the camp – whatever they choose. They will be able to talk with our counselors about their concerns.”

Counselors will be aware of the children’s circumstances before the camp so they can better communicate with them and their families. Parents are encouraged to share any new information the day of the camp.

In some cases, special circumstances may be involved, these could include situations in which the child found the person dead or the deceased was the victim of a violent death such as murder or a car accident.

Since these circumstances can lead to complex grief issues, smaller counseling groups and one-on-one conversations will be available if needed.

Those who have attended the camp in the past are encouraged to come again. “As a child grows, the grief process changes and different coping skills may be needed.”

Memories Matter, which began in 1999, is the only camp of its kind in central Kansas.